Thursday, April 30th, 2015

Moderate north-westerly winds, sunny intervals and showers with temperatures of 9 degrees C. A Roseate Tern flying north represented the highlight of the seawatch, with seven Sandwich Terns recorded and three Common Terns also moving north.

Thornwick Pool proved its worth once again, with four Dunlin, a Little Ringed Plover and a Yellow Wagtail. The year’s first Garden Warbler appeared on the edge of the allotments. Best of all, a Red-rumped Swallow appeared over the pool during the evening and showed well before drifting towards the village.

Red-rumped Swallow, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Red-rumped Swallow, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Red-rumped Swallow, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Red-rumped Swallow, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Red-rumped Swallow, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Red-rumped Swallow, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Wednesday, April 29th, 2015

Mixed weather, with heavy rain at times and a strong south-south-west wind. The highlight was a Red-rumped Swallow over Thornwick Pools early afternoon during a heavy shower; unfortunately it soon departed west once the weather cleared. Proving more co-operative, an Egyptian Goose near North Marsh was actually the day’s rarest visitor in the local context. Two Gadwall were also at North Marsh, with single Ringed Plover and Greenshank over Thornwick Pools and three Whimbrel present. Passerine migrants included 16 Wheatears on the Golf Course, one White Wagtail and three Yellow Wagtails.

Wheatear, Outer Head, by Craig Thomas

Wheatear, Outer Head, by Craig Thomas

Eqyptian Goose, Flamborough, by Martin Garner

Eqyptian Goose, Flamborough, by Martin Garner

Egyptian Goose, near North Marsh, by Andy Hood

Egyptian Goose, near North Marsh, by Andy Hood

Tuesday, April 28th, 2015

Moderate/strong westerly winds and sunny conditions resulted in a quiet seawatch, with four Sandwich Terns heading north the only noteworthy record. On the land the highlight was the brief re-appearance of the Little Bunting at Thornwick Pool. Typically it showed well to one observer before vanishing and wasn’t relocated. Two Tufted Duck, three Dunlin, a Ringed Plover and single Yellow and White Wagtails were on the Pools, whilst four Wheatear, three Stonechats and a minimum of five singing Sedge Warblers were around Thornwick.

Stonechat, Thornwick, by Alan Walkington

Stonechat, Thornwick, by Alan Walkington

Yellow Wagtail, Thornwick Pool, by Andy Hood

Yellow Wagtail, Thornwick Pool, by Andy Hood

 

Monday, April 27th, 2015

A light north-westerly wind and sunshine during the morning, before the wind strengthened from the south-south-east and cloudier conditions prevailed; temperatures rose from 1 degree to 9 degrees C. Seawatching produced three Red-throated Divers, the same number of Manx Shearwaters flying north and three Sandwich Terns.

Sightings on the headland included two Tufted Ducks, a Marsh Harrier, one Long-eared Owl, two Redwing, two Goldcrest, 27 Wheatear, four Yellow Wagtails, a Channel Wagtail, two Tree Pipits and a Little Bunting; the latter briefly near the car-park at Thornwick Pool.

Sedge Warbler, Thornwick Pool, by Alan Walkington

Sedge Warbler, Thornwick Pool, by Alan Walkington

Sunday, April 26th, 2015

Light northerly winds changed to variable later in the day, although temperatures remained cold, reaching 8 degrees C despite sunshine. Seawatching produced three Red-throated Divers flying north, as did 618 Fulmars, four Manx Shearwaters and a Whimbrel. A total of 32 Sandwich Terns flew south (and four north), whilst three Arctic Terns moved north, as did 202 Puffins.

Two Shelduck, five Teal and the Dunlin remained at Thornwick Pool, but the majority of passerine migrants had cleared out. However, 21 Wheatears and two Redwing remained, with two newly-arrived Whinchats present. Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Blackcap and Whitethroat were trapped during a ringing session.

Whinchat, Fog Station, by Martin Garner

Whinchat, Fog Station, by Martin Garner

Dunlin, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Dunlin, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Whitethroat, Flamborough, by Jim Morgan

Whitethroat, Flamborough, by Jim Morgan

Saturday, April 25th, 2015

The day featured moderate westerly winds and sunny intervals, with temperatures of 12 degrees C during the morning. However, a cold front brought rain in the afternoon and temperatures dropped to 4 degrees C.

A Bonxie lingered off the Fog Station during the afternoon, with two Common Buzzards around the Headland, a Dunlin on Thornwick Pool and one Whimbrel nearby. Better still, a Jack Snipe showed well at North Marsh. Passerine migrants again increased in number including 36 Wheatear, 32 Willow Warblers, 20 Blackcap and 17 Yellow Wagtails. In addition, two Blue-headed Wagtails were in the Thornwick area along with a Channel Wagtail. A Ring Ouzel frequented the Golf Course, a male Redstart was at Old Fall and there were 15 House Martins, five Sedge Warblers, five Lesser Whitethroats, a Fieldfare and one Brambling.

Sightings from the Bempton area included five Wheatear, two Yellow Wagtails , one White Wagtail, a Redwing and 50 Yellowhammers.

Blue-headed Wagtail, Thornwick, by Craig Thomas

Blue-headed Wagtail, Thornwick, by Craig Thomas

Friday, April 24th, 2015

Warmer temperatures at last reaching 18 degrees in sunny weather and a little southerly wind. Two Ringed Plover and a Dunlin dropped onto Thornwick Pool, with single Whimbrel and Golden Plover present on the Headland. A Rough-legged Buzzard flew west over Old Fall at 0835hrs.

Passerines included two Ring Ouzels, four ‘continental’ Song Thrush, one Fieldfare, a Black Redstart near North Dykes, four Stonechats, a Whinchat, 14 Wheatear, three Yellow Wagtails, a Channel Wagtail (Blue-headed x Yellow Wagtail hybrid) on the Golf Course and three White Wagtails. Warblers were represented by 14 Blackcaps, four Lesser Whitethroats, four Common Whitethroats, four Sedge Warblers and 13 Willow Warblers. A Firecrest was located in the brambles below the Lighthouse, whilst single Goldcrest and Siskin were also present.

Twenty birds were trapped during a ringing session, including three Chiffchaffs, three Willow Warblers and three Blackcaps.

Bempton RSPB hosted a Short-eared Owl and a Lesser Whitethroat was also present there.

Firecrest, Bay Brambles, by Andrew Allport

Firecrest, Bay Brambles, by Andrew Allport

Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Black Redstart, North Dykes, by Les Day

Black Redstart, North Dykes, by Les Day

Channel Wagtail, Golf Course, by Brett Richards

Channel Wagtail, Golf Course, by Brett Richards

Thursday, April 23rd, 2015

A light south-south-west wind, sunny after a misty start, although temperatures still remained cool at only 12 degrees C. During the seawatch, a Blue Fulmar flew north, as did one Manx Shearwater and four Sandwich Terns. Ten Purple Sandpipers remained in residence on the Outer Head.

A creamcrown Marsh Harrier flew west over Thornwick Pool, whilst migrants included 30 Sand Martins and three White Wagtails at the same location, two Ring Ouzels, one Lesser Whitethroat and a Fieldfare. Unusually, three male Great Spotted Woodpeckers were trapped during a ringing session at South Landing.

White Wagtail, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

White Wagtail, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Dunlin, South Landing, by Brett Richards

Dunlin, South Landing, by Brett Richards

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015

A day of light north-north-east winds and sunny conditions after an overcast start; temperatures reached 9 degrees C by mid-morning. Seawatching produced a Red-throated Diver flying south, four Shelduck south, 29 Common Scoters doing the same, a Whimbrel heading north and five Sandwich Terns north (and one south).

A Long-eared Owl hunted the edge of the Golf Course during the morning, with other records including 13 Chiffchaffs, nine Blackcap, one Sedge Warbler, a Lesser Whitethroat, three Yellow Wagtails and a Common Redstart. A remarkably early record of a churring Nightjar, a rare passage visitor to Flamborough anyway, was heard at South Landing during the evening.

Long-eared Owl, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Long-eared Owl, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

Another sunny day, with light north-north-east winds and temperatures reaching 11 degrees C. Thornwick Pool attracted three Tufted Ducks, a Little Ringed Plover and a Sedge Warbler. A Common Buzzard flew over the village and a Grey Plover was also new. Migrants included three House Martins, a Ring Ouzel and Grasshopper Warbler at Old Fall, whilst a Common Whitethroat was also fresh-in. A Chiffchaff and eight Tree Sparrows were amongst the species trapped and ringed.

West of the Dykes, the Rough-legged Buzzard again hunted the cliff top at Buckton, but a Kingfisher on the Pond there was rarer in the local context.

Grasshopper Warbler, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Grasshopper Warbler, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Kingfisher, Buckton Pond, by Andy Hood

Kingfisher, Buckton Pond, by Andy Hood

 

Monday, April 20th, 2015

A day of light north-easterly winds, sunny conditions and temperatures that reached 11 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included a Red-throated Diver flying south, 244 Fulmars moving north, five Shelduck south, a Bonxie north and nine Sandwich Terns north (and four south).

Thornwick attracted the year’s first Little Ringed Plover and Common Sandpiper, with three Tufted Duck, two pairs of Shelduck and six Teal also present. Migrants included a Long-eared Owl, a Firecrest trapped and ringed, one Sedge Warbler, a male Common Redstart, one Ring Ouzel, a Yellow Wagtail, two White Wagtails and two Brambling.

Firecrest, Flamborough, by Jim Morgan

Firecrest, Flamborough, by Jim Morgan

Long-eared Owl, Flamborough, by Craig Thomas

Long-eared Owl, Flamborough, by Craig Thomas

Little Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Little Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Common Redstart, South Landing, by Les Day

Common Redstart, South Landing, by Les Day

Sunday, April 19th, 2015

A mostly overcast day, with a few sunny spells late morning and early afternoon. Showers during the evening, whilst a strong NNE wind made for challenging conditions on the land.

Today’s highlights came from the seawatch. Birds heading north past the fog station included 2 Red-throated Diver, 458 Fulmar, a Manx Shearwater, 6 Common Scoter, 1 Red-breasted Merganser, 1 Goosander, 1 Great Skua and 197 Puffin (plus 5 south). Tern numbers are beginning to increase, with 2 Common south, 5 Sandwich south and a single north.

Passerine migrants included single Sedge Warbler, Goldcrest and Redwing, with Chiffchaffs and Willow Warblers scattered across the Headland in sheltered spots.

IMG_3223 - Copy   Puffin, by Alan Walkington

Saturday, April 18th, 2015

Another bright sunny day on the headland, with a moderate north-easterly breeze dominated.

A rather unseasonal Grey Phalarope settled on the sea off the fog station several times before flying east; the first ever April record at Flamborough. Also on the seawatch were a Glaucous Gull flying south mid-afternoon, one Mediterranean Gull heading north and a Pochard; the first of the year on the headland.

On the land, the highlight was a Lapland Bunting flying south over the lighthouse grassland during the morning. Two Long-eared Owls were also present on the Headland. A male Ring Ouzel was near North Marsh, while other migrants included two House Martin, 8 Wheatear, 1 Sedge Warbler and 10 Willow Warbler. A Marsh Harrier flew east along the south side of the head at 9am, before heading south-east out to sea.

At Buckton, a Short-eared Owl was again present along with nine Yellow Wagtail and two Shelduck.

Gannets, Bempton, by Lee Johnson

Gannets, Bempton, by Lee Johnson

Friday, April 17th, 2015

A bright sunny day with moderate north easterly winds. A female Redstart at Oceanview was the days highlight. After a quiet winter/spring for the species a single siskin over old fall during the morning was noteworthy. Other migrant totals were 1 Yellow wagtail, 3 Wheatear, 20 Sand Martin, 4 Swallow, 4 Chiffchaff, 1 Willow Warbler, 3 Blackcap and a Whitethroat near Old Fall. A pale Buzzard was also seen over the outer head.

wheatear7Wheatear, by Paul Reed

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

A light north easterly wind with overcast conditions saw further migrants arrive.

Unfortunately there was no sign of the previous days Little Bunting. However, new in was the years first Sedge Warbler at Thornwick. A Little Egret was at northcliffe marsh, whilst yesterdays Firecrest remained on the outer head. 4 Whimbrel and a notable count of 6 Goosander, flew west off Booted Gully.

In the greater recording area, three summer plumaged Red-necked Grebe remained off Sewerby. A Green Woodpecker was again heard calling to the east of Sewerby hall.

ReedBunting-9658                Reed Bunting, by Andrew Allport

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015

A day of light/moderate westerly winds, sunny intervals and temperatures of 13 degrees C. Highlight was a Little Bunting photographed by a visitor near the Lighthouse during the morning; despite searching, it was not relocated.

A Firecrest, the seventh of spring, was located along the hedge running south from the Lighthouse towards the cliffs. Three Ring Ouzels were present on the Outer Head and a Short-eared Owl hunted the Golf Course during the evening. Common migrants increased in number, with 21 Wheatear, 12 Blackcap, 18 Chiffchaffs and a scattering of Willow Warblers across the Headland.

Lil Bunt1          Little Bunting, by Alexey Kurochkin

lil bunt2          Little Bunting, by Alexey Kurochkin

Firecrest, south of Lighthouse, by Craig Thomas

Firecrest, south of Lighthouse, by Craig Thomas

Swallow, Thornwick Pool, by Alan Walkington

Swallow, Thornwick Pool, by Alan Walkington

Tuesday, April 14th, 2015

A generally overcast day, with light/moderate westerly winds and temperatures increasing to 13 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included two Manx Shearwaters flying north, a Whimbrel heading north, one Bonxie doing the same and 11 Sandwich Terns moving north. A Marsh Harrier also flew in off the sea before it continued west, whilst five Tufted Ducks on Thornwick Pool were unusual.

Migrants included five Sand Martins, 11 Swallows, an arrival of 17 Willow Warblers, six Chiffchaffs, three Blackcap, six Wheatear, one Black Redstart, two Ring Ouzels and a Brambling. Five Corn Buntings flew over the Outer Head.

Single Blackcap and Goldcrest, together with six Tree Sparrows, were the main rewards of a ringing session.

Wheatear, Outer Head, by Tony Dixon

Wheatear, Outer Head, by Tony Dixon

Black Redstart, Outer Head, by Martin Garner

Black Redstart, Outer Head, by Martin Garner

 

Monday, April 13th, 2015

After an overnight frost, a day of sunshine until mid-afternoon, light south-westerly winds and temperatures that reached 10 degrees C. During the morning’s seawatch 160 Fulmars flew north, as did a Manx Shearwater, 11 Common Scoter went south, four Sandwich Terns flew north (and two south). Twenty-five Purple Sandpipers remained in residence. A male Ring Ouzel frequented the area around the Fog Station, where a Siskin flew north.

Additional migrants included a Firecrest at South Landing, a Black Redstart on the Outer Head, six Sand Martins, four Swallows, 17 Wheatears, six Chiffchaffs, one Willow Warbler and a Goldcrest. A Corn Bunting was also present near North Marsh.

The Rough-legged Buzzard again showed very well in the Buckton/Bempton area. with a Short-eared Owl, Common Buzzard, Willow Warbler and an early Common Whitethroat also present at Buckton.

Rough-legged Buzzard, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Rough-legged Buzzard, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Ring Ouzel, Fog Station, by Craig Thomas

Ring Ouzel, Fog Station, by Craig Thomas

 

Sunday, April 12th, 2015

An overcast morning before a belt of rain arrived and cleared late afternoon. Maximum temperatures of 10 degrees C felt cool in the moderate/strong westerly wind. An above average seawatch produced eight Red-throated Divers flying south, a Manx Shearwater moving north, two Shoveler heading south, 104 Common Scoters south, two Velvet Scoters flying south, one Arctic Skua and five Sandwich Terns north.

Passerine migrants were thin on the ground, but included 13 Chiffchaffs, a Goldcrest, four Wheatears, a Ring Ouzel at North Landing and a Willow Warbler there.

The Rough-legged Buzzard was again present in the Buckton area, with single Merlin, Short-eared Owl and Wheatear at the same location.

Goldcrest, Outer Head, by Craig Thomas

Goldcrest, Outer Head, by Craig Thomas

Saturday, April 11th, 2015

An overcast start, with a cold front bringing a band of rain for a short time before sunny intervals. The strong wind remained in the west, whilst temperatures dropped from 10 to 7 degrees C.

The day’s undoubted highlight was an Alpine Swift that flew north over the sea off the Fog Station at 0950hrs, before it then showed sporadically in the North Landing area until early afternoon. Four Sandwich Terns also headed north on the seawatch, with a Ring Ouzel flying in off the sea. Migrants included eight Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler, three Wheatear, one Sand Martin, a Goldcrest, two Fieldfare, two Redwing and a Brambling. A Short-eared Owl frequented North Landing during the evening. Linnets were also on the move, with at least 40 heading south. A drake Wood Duck of suspect origin provided an exotic distraction at Thornwick Pool.

West of the Dykes, there were three Wheatear and a White Wagtail at Bempton RSPB. The Rough-legged Buzzard and a Short-eared Owl remained in the Buckton area; where a Tawny Owl was also relatively unusual.

Alpine Swift, North Landing, by Dave Aitken

Alpine Swift, North Landing, by Dave Aitken

Alpine Swift, North Landing, by Craig Thomas

Alpine Swift, North Landing, by Craig Thomas

Friday, April 10th, 2015

The day started with moderate south-south-westerlies and ended with breezy south-south-easterly winds, a light mist early on which never fully lifted and highs of 12°C. Star bird on the morning’s seawatch was a summer plumage Little Gull that flew south.

Land-based migrants included Woodcock, Golden Plover, two Sand Martin, two Swallow, six Chiffchaff and a Wheatear.

The Rough-legged Buzzard remained along the cliff top between Buckton and Speeton.

Linnet-9512

Linnet, Thornwick, by Andrew Allport

Thursday, April 9th, 2015

Thick fog dominated early morning, though it then quickly lifted to leave a day of sunshine and highs of 10°C. The day’s clear highlight was a pod of Bottlenose Dolphins containing up to 18 individuals. Originally picked up at Long Nab at 8:40am, they passed by Filey at 10:50am, Bempton RSPB at 12:50pm and reached the headland at 14:13pm.

Little of note on land with the exception of a White Wagtail on the Golf Course, Wheatear on the Outer Head, a Stonechat, five Fieldfare at South Landing and two Redwings. In addition, 16 each of Chiffchaff and Goldcrest, one Blackcap, two Sand Martin and eight Swallows were recorded.

The Rough-legged Buzzard continued its stay at Buckton.

Greenfinch, Thornwick, by Andrew Allport

Greenfinch, Thornwick, by Andrew Allport

Bottlenose Dolphins, off Fog Station, by Craig Thomas

Bottlenose Dolphins, off Fog Station, by Craig Thomas

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

A pleasant start this morning, with light north-north-westerlies followed by another fine day of sunshine and temperatures of 11°C; south-south-easterlies during the afternoon. Two Sandwich Tern headed north and a Woodcock which flew ‘in-off’ were the best bits past the headland.

Three Wheatears were located, with a male and female near the Golf Course and a male at Thornwick Pool. Overall eight Chiffchaff were logged (including three birds ringed), 12 Goldcrest (including five birds ringed), three Swallow, a Common Buzzard over the Living Seas Centre and a Jack Snipe at North Marsh.

Thornwick Pool played host to three Sand Martin, two Shelduck and a Grey Wagtail. Two Black Redstarts were present; a female-type in the car park at Thornwick and another in the village. Green Sandpipers were on the Outer Head and North Marsh, with single Snipe, Little Grebe and Sand Martin also present at the former.

The Rough-legged Buzzard remained at Buckton, where a Marsh Harrier and Common Buzzard were also recorded.

Chiffchaff, YWT Living Seas Centre, by Jim Morgan

Chiffchaff, YWT Living Seas Centre, by Jim Morgan

Yellowhammer, South Landing, by Alan Walkington

Yellowhammer, South Landing, by Alan Walkington

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

A mild start to the day, with gentle westerlies which progressed into a day of sunshine, light north-westerlies and highs of 12°C. A Mute Swan, still a locally scarce bird for Flamborough, drifted north on the sea during the morning’s seawatch, when 187 Meadow Pipits were also recorded flying north.

Reduced observer coverage after the bank holiday weekend still produced a Long-eared Owl on the Outer Head, Black Redstart in the North Landing area and the first Yellow Wagtail of spring overflew Old Fall Plantation. Hirundines trickled through, with four Sand Martin and a Swallow recorded on the headland, with a further two Swallows through Bempton RSPB.

The Rough-legged Buzzard and up to three Short-eared Owl remained in the Buckton area.

Rough-legged Buzzard, Buckton, by Alan Walkington

Rough-legged Buzzard, Buckton, by Alan Walkington

Mute Swan, off Fog Station, by Brett Richards

Mute Swan, off Fog Station, by Brett Richards

Monday, April 6th, 2015

Thick fog engulfed the headland early on, clearing later leaving a predominately overcast day, improving in the afternoon with some sunshine. North-easterlies for the first half of the day, switching to south-south-east for the second half, with highs of 9°C. Little of note on the seawatch due to poor visibility in the morning.

Three Firecrests remained with birds at North Landing, Old Fall Plantation and one along the South Landing nature trail. Two White Wagtails were at North Marsh, with a Wheatear near the Fog Station. In addition, 18 Goldcrest and eight Chiffchaff were logged throughout the course of the day.

Thornwick Pool hosted five Teal, two Shelduck, Barn Owl and two Fieldfare. A Sandwich Tern flew east past South Landing and, nearby, five Red-necked Grebes and a Velvet Scoter were between Sewerby and South Dykes.

Buckton scored again, with the wandering Rough-legged Buzzard, as well as two Short-eared Owls, two Goldcrest, Chiffchaff, two Peregrine and a Water Rail.

Rough-legged Buzzard, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Rough-legged Buzzard, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Sunday, April 5th, 2015

Across the headland a fine day ensued, with plenty of sunshine and light south-westerlies, switching to north then round to south-east, with highs of 10°C in the afternoon. A drake Scaup heading north, followed by the year’s second record of Sandwich Tern, were the morning’s seawatching highlights.

Migration finally started to hot up with three Firecrest recorded on the headland; a single bird at North Landing and two birds between Old Fall steps and the Plantation. Two Ring Ouzels were also welcome finds, with a bird at Booted Gully and another near North Marsh. An impressive total of 51 Goldcrest was also noted across the recording area, as well as a minimum of 16 Chiffchaff, four Woodcocks and single Blackcap and White Wagtail.

Thornwick Pool hosted to a Green Sandpiper, two Shelduck and a Little Grebe. Little Grebes were also present at North Marsh, with two birds there, and a single bird on the Outer Head. South Landing produced a Great Northern Diver, five drake Eider, 11 Common Scoter and a Great Crested Grebe, while four Red-necked Grebes remained offshore between there and Sewerby.

As well as birds arriving, there were clearly birds ready to depart, with small numbers of Redwing and Fieldfare recorded around the Head. West of the dykes a Short-eared Owl lingered at Buckton, where two Buzzard drifted north-west over the village.

Ring Ouzel, Booted Gully, by Lee Johnson

Ring Ouzel, Booted Gully, by Lee Johnson

Firecrest, Old Fall Steps, by Martin Garner

Firecrest, Old Fall Steps, by Martin Garner

White Wagtail, Outer Head, by Craig Thomas

White Wagtail, Outer Head, by Craig Thomas

Green Sandpiper, Thornwick Pool, by Lee Johnson

Green Sandpiper, Thornwick Pool, by Lee Johnson

Saturday, April 4th, 2015

The northerly wind dropped in strength and, after an overcast start to the day with very light rain, the sun broke through and temperatures ‘climbed’ to 9 degrees C. During the seawatch a Great Northern Diver flew north, as did the year’s first two Sandwich Terns. Two Red-necked Grebes were off South Landing, two Little Grebes were at North Marsh, whilst a pair of Tufted Ducks on the Outer Head represented the first for the year. A Merlin also hunted the north side of the Outer Headland.

Presumably the same Green Woodpecker that had been seen at Sewerby earlier in the week was relocated on the Outer Head, before it was observed flying back towards the village. There was an influx of passerines including the year’s first Wheatear and Ring Ouzel, with singles of both. A Firecrest was new in at Old Fall, whilst 22 Chiffchaffs were recorded along with 17 Goldcrests and three White Wagtails.

Single Short-eared Owls were seen at Bempton Cliffs RSPB and Buckton respectively.

Firecrest, Old Fall, by Craig Thomas

Firecrest, Old Fall, by Craig Thomas

Friday, April 3rd, 2015

Light/moderate south-south-easterly winds, persistent rain/misty conditions for most of the day and temperatures that peaked at 6 degrees C meant birding was difficult. Seawatching from North Landing was rewarded with eight Eiders heading north and three Common Scoter moving south, whilst Puffin numbers continue to increase. Four Red-necked Grebes were again between South Dykes and Sewerby. Single Grey Heron and Golden Plover were present, whilst two Chiffchaffs, two Goldcrests, two Treecreepers, a Mistle Thrush and two Coal Tits were on the Headland, together with the year’s first two White Wagtails.

Kestrel, South Landing, by Craig Thomas

Kestrel, South Landing, by Craig Thomas

Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

The day started with moderate/strong north-westerly winds, although the wind dropped off during the day. Temperatures reached 7 degrees C during sunny intervals. A Blue Fulmar flew north on the seawatch, as did 389 Fulmars, one Manx Shearwater, 349 Puffins and six Lesser Black-backed Gulls also headed north, of which five appeared to be ‘intermedius’. In addition, tens of thousands of auks streamed back north after an absence of several days.

Elsewhere, the Pintail remained on North Marsh, a Merlin hunted over South Landing, a Short-eared Owl was present in the Gorse Field, with single Goldcrest and Chiffchaff also observed.

West of the Dykes, the Bempton/Buckton area attracted two Short-eared Owls, two Common Buzzards, a Jack Snipe, four Scandinavian Rock Pipits and 50 Yellowhammers.

Common Buzzard, by Alan Walkington

Common Buzzard, by Alan Walkington

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

The month started as the last left off, with strong west-north-west winds, sunny intervals and showers; temperatures reached 9 degrees C. During the seawatch, 244 Fulmars flew north, as did six Puffins and a single Little Auk. Two Barn Owls hunted the Hartendale area, a Tawny Owl roosted in South Landing, whilst passerines included two Chiffchaffs, a Goldcrest, two Treecreepers and a Coal Tit.

However, the main interest was at Sewerby, where two Red-necked Grebes remained in residence. Better still, a Green Woodpecker, a local rarity, was present in trees east of the Hall.

'sinensis' Cormorant, North Cliffs, by Brett Richards

‘sinensis’ Cormorant, North Cliffs, by Brett Richards

Cormorant, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas

Cormorant, Thornwick Pool, by Craig Thomas